Veeam backup & replication is a necessity if you run VMs
Robert Paul | TrustRadius Reviewer
Updated August 02, 2019

Veeam backup & replication is a necessity if you run VMs

Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
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Overall Satisfaction with Veeam Backup & Replication

We currently use Veeam to back up our entire enterprise and replicate the data to our colo site. This allows to maintain data integrity and be prepared in case of a disaster. Continuity is an incredibly important business need for us, and Veeam allows us to get back up and running quickly, in addition to the occasional recovery of accidentally deleted files.
  • Backups: I'm sure this doesn't need to be said, but Veeam does do backups extremely well, especially in a VMWare environment. It's fast, reliable, and easy.
  • Recovery: Having backups with no way to recover is rather pointless, so it's a good thing that Veeam has that functionality. There are a lot of options, from file-level recover (including e-mails) to entire VM restores.
  • Replication: Veeam B&R also allows for easy replication of data to multiple locations.
  • Reporting and Alerts: Veeam also has great reporting functionality, as well as alerts. I get emails every morning on all my backup jobs, and immediately if they fail.
  • Retention and clean up: Backups can be configured to merge and clean data for retention. This usually works fine, but we do occasionally run into issues where Veeam doesn't delete old data. Thanks to alerting, I know when this is the case before the datasets get too large, but it would be nice if it worked all the time.
  • Agents: For servers that aren't VMs, there is an agent that gets installed. It works fine, but in order to manage the backups and schedules for these servers, you have to log on to the server directly instead of using the main console application.
  • Options: In most cases, more options are better, but I find that a lot of the time, there are just too many, especially when it comes to how to manage data retention.
  • Licensing is per socket, so the overall impact to the budget has been pretty small compared to how many servers we run in our virtual environment.
  • Recovery is pretty quick, and easy, so it doesn't require a lot of man-hours or downtime.
  • Fortunately, I can't speak to the impact of a total outage and recovery, but my sense is that Veeam would do this pretty fast too, since it does single VMs pretty quickly.
We do not do anything cloud-related so I cannot speak to this specifically. If it does this as well as it does localized backup and replication, I'm sure it's great.
Our organization does not fall under any specific compliance guidelines, and we have not done any sandbox testing at this time. We do, however, verify our backup data for recoverability with full recovery tests each month on multiple servers. Additionally, we had an issue with replication (not related to Veeam) a few months ago and were able to use the data copy feature to migrate the backups to a new repository.
Datto is another backup solution I have familiarity with. It, too, will back up at a VM level, recover VMs, and can even run VMs off its own hardware (it's a standalone box rather than a piece of software installed and pointed to a backup repository). It also syncs data to their own cloud storage.

I also think it's junk.

Unlike Veeam, there's little control over your own data, and it's complicated without direct assistance. Every three months or so, the data would get corrupted and I'd have to start over, which also required Datto to send me an external hard drive so they could re-seed the cloud. That did not inspire confidence in our ability to recover data in case of an actual emergency. It did let us restore data the one time I needed it, to be fair, but that's just because we were lucky not to be in a period of problems.
If your business is running a virtual environment, especially VMWare, there is no better option than Veeam for backups. It integrates perfectly, and because it can recover directly to a VM, makes disaster recovery that much faster. If you run all physical servers - perhaps in a small environment - the use case would be much harder to make.

Veeam Backup & Replication Feature Ratings

Universal recovery
10
Live recovery
10
Recovery verification
10
Business application protection
10
Multiple backup destinations
10
Incremental backup identification
10
Backup to the cloud
Not Rated
Deduplication and file compression
10
Snapshots
10
Flexible deployment
10
Platform support
10
Retention options
9
Encryption
10

Using Veeam Backup & Replication

4 - I am the primary user as the network admin. I manage all backup and restore functions. The others are familiar with it as a fallback in case I am not in the office, but the role for backups here falls to the network administrator. We're a fairly small team, so a larger business might have someone who only manages backups, although I think with Veeam they'd be awfully bored most of the time.
1 - As I stated earlier, the role here falls under the network administrator. I manage the entire network, the VMWare infrastructure, &c., so managing backups is my sole responsibility. Skillwise, one needs familiarity with the server environment (VMWare in our case), and some good planning skills to organize the backups in a way that the VMs are spread out and data is managed sufficiently.
  • Disaster Recovery: Veeam is designed to get a business up and running quickly in case of disaster. This is extremely important for us.
  • File Level Backups: We occasionally have users accidentally delete a file or e-mail, and it's very quick and easy to recover with Veeam. This helps us with customer service.
  • Replication: We replicate data to our colo facility, largely for DR but also for redundancy.
  • VMWare allows snapshots, but sometimes that's not sufficient. We've used Veeam to roll back changes - sometimes because we forget to use snapshots, and sometimes because the changes were unplanned
  • Cloning VMs for a test environment
  • Supporting server OS upgrades
Veeam does everything it needs to, and it operates very well. It's licensed per CPU which means it doesn't matter how many VMs we run. It has yet to fail us, and we've definitely had to use it to recover not just file-level data but occasionally VMs in whole as well.

Evaluating Veeam Backup & Replication and Competitors

  • Price
  • Product Features
  • Product Usability
  • Product Reputation
  • Analyst Reports
  • Third-party Reviews
The features were likely the most important factor, specifically that it ties so well into our VMWare environment. That it will restore an entire VM directly to the ESXi cluster without much fuss (and with various options like turning it on or changing the network, &c.) limits our downtime if it ever occurs.
I don't believe we would change it. We use the same process we use for everything, demos, third party reviews, cost-benefit analysis, and vendor or partner recommendations. We also rely on the experience of our team and other products they've used. It's a whole approach, and as I write this it seems complicated on paper, but it's mostly time consuming - and fruitful in the end.

Veeam Backup & Replication Implementation

(I assume this question should say "Veeam" and not "Crownpeak Universal Consent Platform")

Planning is key. Planning your backup schedule, size, data restore points, replication if you're doing that, &c. Testing is also important; make sure you back something up and then do a test restore. Set up alerts so you know if things aren't working (or even if they are, always good to know that too).
Change management was minimal - There was very little change with regards to Veeam, aside from not using tapes anymore. If anything that made it easier. And since it isn't a company-facing piece of software, only IT - and only those responsible for backups - were affected. And we're perfectly fine with change, especially if it increases our efficiency.
  • Engineering backups: We had to figure out the schedule and size and how to break down the backup schedule so it didn't overwhelm the network
  • Data size: We also had to figure out how many data points to keep so we didn't fill up the storage

Veeam Backup & Replication Support

Veeam has a pretty decent knowledgebase with articles relevant to all sorts of possible issues (I'v eonly had a few). There's also a forum with searchable answers. Beyond that, submitting a ticket or calling support is easy and they're prompt. We had a licensing issue once and they helped us resolve it within a few hours, even though it wasn't strictly critical.
ProsCons
Quick Resolution
Good followup
Knowledgeable team
Problems get solved
Kept well informed
No escalation required
Immediate help available
Support understands my problem
Support cares about my success
Quick Initial Response
None
Yes - This is a critical system for us, so we have to have support at all times, just in case. It rarely gets used, and certainly there's an argument to be made that we're spending money on something that's infrequently utilized, but I see it like insurance: you don't need it until you need it.
We've had very few issues with Veeam, but we did have an issue where our licenses were out of sync. Basically, we bought licensing for our old 2-server setup, then expanded to 3 servers, and bought additional licensing. We had to merge the license files. This merge can be done in the user support portal, but we didn't know that. So when we talked to support, the agent walked us through it without any attitude or problems.

Using Veeam Backup & Replication

If you are familiar with most Windows software UIs, there should be no issue learning Veeam. Even better if you're already familiar with backup strategies, &c., since all of that is integrated and possible. I doubt my grandmother could use it, but she's not the target audience. If you've been in IT for a bit, this is very usable.
ProsCons
Like to use
Relatively simple
Easy to use
Technical support not required
Well integrated
Consistent
Quick to learn
Convenient
Feel confident using
Familiar
None
  • Initial setup: very easy to get things connected and running
  • Scheduling backups: intuitive, for the most part
  • Restoring data: There's a wizard or a manual process, and it's very simple to use
  • Data management: sometimes it can be hard to remove old backups that may not have cleared up, as you have to go to two different places
  • Renaming backups: Minor, perhaps, but I renamed and rearranged backups, but the data folders retain their old names